Many business schools felt optimistic at the start of the hiring season last fall, and for the most part their expectations were met in 2012. Job offers continued to be plentiful, making schools confident that a stronger job market for MBA graduates has returned, hopefully to stay.
This year, half of Bloomberg Businessweek's 30 top-ranked U.S. schools managed to improve their job placement rates. There were no dramatic increases in job placement rates this year, but schools that saw improvement managed to boost their offer rates by anywhere from one to four percentage points over last year. Some schools managed to place all but a small percentage of their students three months post-graduation, such as Emory University's Goizueta Business School and Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. A handful of schools reported that 10 percent or more of their graduates were without job offers three months out. At the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, the number of graduates lacking job offers more than doubled, and nearly one out of four were still searching for work.
Consulting was the most popular industry, followed closely by financial services. Other hot industries for graduates this year were technology, consumer products, and energy. Meanwhile, employers such as Boston Consulting Group, Amazon.com, and McKinsey were active on the recruiting scene, snapping up many of this year's most promising MBA graduates and ranking as top employers on many business school campuses.
Note: Job placement refers to job offers received within three months of graduation. The schools are ranked in order of placement rates, with the best listed first. In case of ties, schools with placement rates that improved the most since 2011 received a higher rank.